“Mom? Dad? Could you play with me?”
His mother peered down at him over her phone. She sniffed in distaste at the sight of her son's dirty hands.
“Oh, Peter you little fool, you're not worth my time. Just look at yourself. You're not a CEO or a President. Mommy has important people to “play” with, darling. So run along and make something of yourself. Maybe then we can play.” Peters father turned to her,
“Couldn’t have said it better, my dear”. He leaned over and gave mother a quick kiss on the cheek. Just as quickly as they shared a glance they both returned to their screens.
Peter's eyes filled with tears as he slowly turned and walked away. He paused before leaving the garage at a dusty old mirror leaning against the wall. Peter took a hard look at himself in the mirror scrutinizing every inch of his appearance. At the side of the dirt on his hands, he quickly rubbed them off on his pants. He then moved closer to the mirror.
He blinked and suddenly he could no longer see himself in the mirror. He frantically waved his arms in an attempt to find his reflection. He starts to gasp faster and faster as he starts to hyperventilate with panic. Surely, he could not disappear simply because he was not important, could he?
Suddenly, it all became too much for little Peter. He grabbed his head and screamed. His parents groaned and left closing the door behind them. It locked in their wake with a soft click.
Peter lay shivering in his sleep on the garage floor, his back turned away from the old mirror.
“Peter.” Peter shifts in his sleep. He whimpers when he hears the whisper.
“Peeeter.” His eyes blink open. He sits up and turns toward the door, and the mirror.
“Look in the mirror Peter.” Peter stumbles to the mirror. He gasps at the sight of his reflection. Upon a closer examination of the mirror, he gave out another whimper. His reflection was exactly like him except for the eyes. They were yellow around the pupil but shifted to a blood red.
“Wha-. Who are you?”
“I am you.” The reflection spoke with cold mocking precision.
“But, but I'm me.”
”Well, I'm the new and improved you.”
“But I don't need improvement. What is improvement?” His reflection let out a long-suffering sigh and rolled its eyes.
“Let me explain in simple terms. I'm. here. to. REPLACE. you.” Peter's eyes fill with fear and a hint of lingering confusion.
“I'm going to take your mommy and daddy, kid.” Peter's eyes widen even further as his reflection stretched and grew in the mirror. The reflection strangely still looks like him, a future teenaged version of little Peter.
The reflection of the garage shifts away, replaced by a bedroom. His parent's bedroom. He could see their chests rising and falling through their blue blanket.
The reflection turns towards Peter’s sleeping parents, his fingers shifting into the sharp claws. Peter screams out,
“MOMMY! DADDY! RUN!” At his cry, the reflection turns back towards the little boy. He sneers down at him,
”You’re too late, kid. You'll always be too late.” With this last remark, he lunges at Peter’s parents.
“NO!” Peter lunges at the mirror trying to save his parents. The mirror shattered at the boy's impact. An eerie cackle rings in little Peter’s ears as glass shards explode around him. He cries out as a glass shard slices a crescent moon shaped scar around the left side of his jaw.
Peter looked down at his hands, his hands shaking as he watched his hands start to bleed. He looked down at the glass dazzling with moonlight from the skylight. Crisis on blood soon mixed with the pure white shards. Peter watched in fascinated horror as the glass started to absorb his blood.
“A- A- AAAAAAAH!” In a corner of the old mirror within a largely unshattered portion of the glass, a dark red shadow’s gleaming white teeth smiled at little Peter’s screams.